The five-furlong Debutante, which was first run in 1895, is the featured 10th race on an 11-race Saturday card on the final weekend of racing in the Churchill Downs Spring Meet. Post time for the first of the day's races is 1:10 p.m.The Virginia-bred Blues In Seattle, who has been installed as the 5-2 morning line favorite for the Debutante, is owned and was bred by Joseph Allbritton's Lazy Lane Farm. She scored a sharp victory for trainer Frank Brothers in her career debut on June 9 at Churchill Downs. She won a five-furlong maiden race by a half-length in near track record time of :57.39. "She's obviously been a very precocious 2-year-old," said Brothers. "She got ready to run early and has done everything right. It looks like she has some ability and has got the right kind of pedigree." Blues In Seattle's legendary sire enjoyed the greatest day of his career at Churchill Downs when the unbeaten colt won the 1977 Kentucky Derby. Seattle Slew went on to win the Preakness and the Belmont Stakes to become the first and only unbeaten horse to win the Triple Crown.
Brothers trained her dam, Bourbon Blues, and second dam Beal Street Blues, who won the Del Mar Debutante and finished fifth in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (GI) as a 2-year-old in 1992 for Allbritton. So the early success enjoyed by Blues In Seattle comes as no surprise to her trainer.
"She belongs in there and the timing between the races is very good," said Brothers. "It's a graded race and it would be great if she could run credibly in there." Blues In Seattle will be ridden by Lonnie Meche and will break from post three. Another major contender for the Debutante, Woodlyn Farm's D'Nile, will be looking to avenge an earlier loss to Blues In Seattle. The Ken McPeek-trained daughter of Capote finished third to that rival in her career debut and returned to established a track record for five furlongs in a 3 1/4-length maiden victory at Churchill Downs on June 23.
D'Nile will be ridden by Jose Martinez, Jr. and will break from post one. She is listed as the 3-1 second choice in the morning line. The Debutante field also includes Mike Tarp's Vibs, who finished fourth against colts in the Kentucky Breeders' Cup (gr. III); Awesome Humor, who won her only career race in April at Keeneland for trainer Ronny Werner; Audobon Stable's Bridget Says, a recent winner at Lone Star Park; the McPeek-trained Attemptress, winner of her lone start at Churchill Downs; and Miss Awesome, a recent winner at Churchill Downs.
The field for the Debutante with jockeys and odds is as follows:
1) D'Nile, Jose Martinez, 3-1
2) Bridget Says, Larry Melancon, 8-1
3) Blues In Seattle, Lonnie Meche, 5-2
4) Vibs, Robby Albarado, 7-2
5) Miss Awesome, Willie Martinez, 20-1
6) Attemptress, Mark Guidry, 6-1
7) Awesome Humor, Calvin Borel, 4-1